Ian Powell has written an extremely well researched article on CDHB. It is published by Victoria Universities “Democracy Project”. It summarises how CDHB has been completely done over by the Ministry of Health and its various sub agencies over the years. Our area has been a victim of incompetent central government agencies’ decisions since our earthquakes. We were told what we should be doing, and we, as a greater city, suffered huge dis-service as a result.
This article demonstrates that the rot started before the earthquakes.
How often have we travelled around New Zealand and had friends and family say that we have been very lucky on how much we have received from the State since the earthquakes? This article carefully lays out how bit by bit we got clobbered. By both Governments.
Here’s an interesting part of the article:
CDHB reached an insurance settlement of $320 million (the maximum able to be claimed despite the fact that the DHB had stopped counting damage at $540 million as the maximum payable at the time was $320 million – this highlighted just how woefully under-insured the whole New Zealand health sector was).
The Ministry and Treasury believed that the insurance settlement should be treated as “new” capital and should be shifted into the national capital pool but CDHB successfully challenged this arguing that it should be ring-fenced to Canterbury as the purpose of insurance was to ‘put right’ or replace damaged buildings as a result of the earthquakes rather new capital for use outside Canterbury.
The unhappy central agencies then required that the capital charge (on major capital works government funding) be applied to the insurance settlement. That is, they treated the insurance money as if it were for new capital when it wasn’t.
Upping the tension was Ministry rhetoric to other DHBs that over the past decade, almost all the national capital works funding went to Canterbury. The truth was the opposite. Burwood was funded out of CDHB cash reserves and other earthquake recovery developments from the $320 million insurance settlement – it is worth noting that CDHB lost 44 buildings that it used to operate out of as well as having over 13,000 hospital rooms damaged. In fact, of the $700 million capital works spending by CDHB up until the end of 2017, only $50 million had been provided by the Government. Given the relatively low approved major capital works in the other DHBs the question has to be asked; where did the other $650 million go?
The Ministry wanted to control the necessary rebuilds at CDHB and advised Government, without consulting CDHB, that it was more competent to run large capital works despite CDHB’s long track record of large-scale successful facility developments. It led to the creation of the Ministry dominated Hospital Rebuild Partnership Group which, to adapt a successful whiskey advertisement around three decades ago, was the kind of partnership you have when you aren’t having partnership.
The interesting fact is that the building which the Ministry took over constructing was delivered 3 years late and it cost CDHB $70m extra every year having to lease additional 10 operating theatres from the private sector every day every week for 3 years.
I’ve got to the point of failing to understand why any politicians trust MOH.
An interesting fact which is in the article above was this sentence:
In fact, of the $700 million capital works spending by CDHB up until the end of 2017, only $50 million had been provided by the Government. Given the relatively low approved major capital works in the other DHBs the question has to be asked; where did the other $650 million go?
Politicians need to think carefully about these indisputable facts. The Labour Party was up in arms when they were in opposition about this sort of fact. Then they became the Government and all of a sudden, this sort of twisting of numbers became OK and they agreed with them. As the old nuns used to say to us as kids “the Lord moves in mysterious ways”. In this case the “Lord” is the Government, of any shade.
A senior specialist Doctor wrote to me after reading this article and said:
As well as such a huge local lost to Canterbury, the policy of tight central control versus collaboration with local health professionals is sometimes that will affect the whole country …
Here’s the article, which will make those of you who have followed this carefully, experience extreme frustration at how we have been so badly short changed as a province. It should also make some of those local MP’s who said those of us who were angry at how the Labour Government had mucked up over this matter. Including the one who recently said that Garry Moore has his facts wrong. Well dispute these facts. They are the same as the ones we have been quoting.
Here’s the article: